Los Angeles Chargers running back Austin Ekeler and Yahoo Sports’ Fantasy Expert Matt Harmon are joined by Chargers Pro Bowl quarterback Justin Herbert. The Bolts dynamic duo dish on the fantasy outlook for their high-powered offense, including a couple sleepers that every fantasy manager will be interested in. Catch fresh episodes of Ekeler’s Edge every Wednesday on Yahoo Sports and your favorite social media platforms. Listen to Ekeler’s Edge on the Yahoo Fantasy Football Forecast wherever you get podcasts.
JUSTIN HERBERT: I'm taking you first overall if I'm in a fantasy game.
AUSTIN EKELER: This is my guy. I told you, man. Play for this guy forever, man.
MATT HARMON: All right. It would be stupid if I was on the show and didn't get like a scouting report on every single kind of, like, major fantasy player from you guys. I mean, obviously, we have like a top five pick here in Austin Ekeler. I mean, you said to me the other day you weren't, like, aware of how high you were--
AUSTIN EKELER: I really wasn't. I was like, dang. People are like taking me, like, top four, top five. Like--
JUSTIN HERBERT: I'm surprised that you're out of the top five, like, if I hear that, I'm surprised. I think you should be way up there.
AUSTIN EKELER: I know. I was like, oh. You score 20 touchdowns, people like that apparently in fantasy.
JUSTIN HERBERT: That's what I thought.
MATT HARMON: Well the thing is, though, everybody comes after. It's like well, he scored 20 last year. He's not going to do it again. He's going to regress. Like, touches-- touchdowns per target.
AUSTIN EKELER: Well see, man.
JUSTIN HERBERT: I'm taking you first overall, if I'm in a fantasy league.
AUSTIN EKELER: Guys, this is my guy. I told you, man. Play for this guy forever, man. Sheesh.
MATT HARMON: Let's talk about some of the receivers, too, like Keenan Allen is a guy that-- you know, he's been doing it for years. He's been consistent. Andy Behrens one of the other hosts on the show, just talks about, like, I can take Keenan Allen as, like, receiver eight, and just, like, set it and forget it. 100 catches, boom. I know what-- I know what he's going to be.
And he seems, Justin, to me as a guy that's, like, fits perfectly in this kind of like quicker strike offense. But I would like, if I could just personally make a little bit of a petition to you, and you can take this to the coaches too. I'd like to see some more like downfield stuff for Keenan Allen this year.
JUSTIN HERBERT: Yeah, I get that. I mean, it's tough because he's just been so consistent, and especially on third down. You know he's going to get open.
MATT HARMON: Always open.
JUSTIN HERBERT: You know he's had so much success over the past few years that you just put him out there, and you know that he's going to give it his best. And he's had an incredible camp so far. We've seen a lot, a lot of good things from him. So I'm looking forward to watching this year.
AUSTIN EKELER: And, look. You got to play your players where they're going to be the best, right?
MATT HARMON: Yeah.
AUSTIN EKELER: Where's Keenan going to be the best? Intermediate, short, cross, like that's his bread and butter. That's why he got paid. That's why he's getting paid $20 million a year because of doing that stuff. So you seen him down the field, maybe. But I definitely know you're going to see him in the immediate getting open. That's for sure.
MATT HARMON: 100 catches, 110 catches. Like I said, you can book that every single day of the week.
AUSTIN EKELER: Absolutely.
MATT HARMON: Mike Williams, though, kind of had a breakout year last year. They sign him back before he hits free agency, which is awesome. He's a guy, though, that-- Austin you just said, like, you play a guy where he wins. He sort of in the first four weeks of the season had kind of that like lower average depth of target. Then you see him get more vertical looks. Where do you think, Justin, Mike Williams fits in best as a guy winning outside at wide receiver?
JUSTIN HERBERT: Yeah, it's a good question. I think with Mike, he's put in so much work the past couple of years I think he's unlocked a whole bunch of different aspects of his game, where it's not just deep balls. It's not just throwing it up to him. It's he can win short routes. He can win intermediate. And, you know, he's a threat inside, outside. And even hand the ball off and like letting him go do something with it. He's incredible at that, so.
AUSTIN EKELER: Oh, he'll love that one.
JUSTIN HERBERT: You got to respect that.
AUSTIN EKELER: I love that.
JUSTIN HERBERT: I think Mike's going to have a big year, and wherever he plays he's going to make something happen.
MATT HARMON: All right. So those are the obvious guys, right? Keenan, Austin, Mike Williams, and you, too, as well, Justin. Obviously. Who are the sleepers on this team? Who are the guys that, like, could take that next step, whether it's Josh Palmer, one of the other guys on the roster? Who are we thinking potential breakout in fantasy this year?
JUSTIN HERBERT: Yeah, I think Gerald Everett has had a great camp so far, and he's definitely one of those guys that's going to get a bunch of targets, able to beat man coverage on third down, and he'll be able to take some of the attention away from Mike and Keenan on third down. So I think Gerald's going to have a big year, too.
AUSTIN EKELER: I would agree, man. I mean, I'll put Josh Palmer in there, too. Like, this guy, every time we see him on the field, he's making some type of play. He was doing that his rookie year last year. Obviously, we saw it at the end of the season, but we saw it throughout the season as well. So that's what I'm saying, man. Like, just draft all of our off skill players, man. Those are the sleepers.